Ron Livingston to star in Defying Gravity for BBC Two
Ron Livingston (The Time Traveler's Wife, Sex And The City, Band Of Brothers) stars in Defying Gravity, a new adventure drama series from creator and Executive Producer James Parriott (Grey's Anatomy) and Executive Producer Michael Edelstein (Desperate Housewives).
The 13-part thriller begins filming in Canada in January 2009, and will broadcast on BBC Two later next year.
Janice Hadlow, Controller, BBC Two, says: "In 2009 it will be 40 years since man first landed on the moon and yet the subject of space remains as mysterious and fascinating as ever, making it a timely and compelling backdrop for this epic adventure."
Set in the near future, Defying Gravity revolves around the exploits of eight astronauts from five countries (four men and four women) who undertake a mysterious six-year international space mission through the solar system.
With the eyes of the world upon them – everything they do is monitored and every emotion they feel scrutinised – they soon discover that their real assignment is not at all what they thought...
Jane Tranter, BBC Controller, Fiction, says: "The calibre of the talent involved in this drama series both in front and behind-the-scenes makes Defying Gravity one of the most exciting new series for 2009.
"Although primarily a human drama, the landscape and context and genre of Defying Gravity give it a very different flavour from other dramas on the BBC."
The cast also includes: Laura Harris (24, Stargate, CSI) as Chloe; Eyal Podell (Commander In Chief, The Young And The Restless) as Mintz; Christina Cox (Stargate: Atlantis) as Jen; Zahf Paroo (Firewall) as Ajay and Florentine Lahme will play Nadia.
Further casting to follow.
Jim Parriott added: "This is a new way of making and selling television, and we could not be more thrilled to be in business with the BBC and ahead of the curve.
"It has been a joy to work with this team, and all the partners on Defying Gravity, as we set out to build a show with drama, humour and suspense – elements we hope will resonate for viewers across the pond and planet."
Filming in Canada for six months from 19 January 2009, Defying Gravity is a US/Canadian co-venture with Fox Television Studios and Omni Film Productions Ltd in association with Canadian broadcasters CTV and SPACE, German broadcaster ProSieben, and the BBC.
The creator/executive producers are James Parriott (Grey's Anatomy; Ugly Betty) and Michael Edelstein (Desperate Housewives).
Executive producers also include Brian Hamilton (Robson Arms) and Michael Chechik for Omni Films and Tim Haines (Primeval; Space Odyssey: Voyage To The Planets) for Impossible Pictures.
Directors include David Straiton (House) and Peter Howitt (Sliding Doors).
Defying Gravity was commissioned by Jane Tranter, BBC Controller, Fiction.
Notes to Editors
Defying Gravity was inspired by the BBC drama-documentary series Space Odyssey: Voyage To The Planets, broadcast on BBC One in 2004.
BBC Two's distinctive drama slate continued to diversify in 2008 with Burn Up, BBC Drama Production's House Of Saddam, the long-awaited second season of The Tudors and the much anticipated third season of Heroes transmitting to critical acclaim this year.
The single play continues to be an important part of BBC Drama and two recent television adaptations of celebrated stage plays – My Zinc Bed from David Hare starring Uma Thurman and Jonathan Pryce, and Caryl Churchill's A Number, starring Tom Wilkinson and Rhys Ifans – recently enjoyed success on BBC Two together with Einstein And Eddington starring David Tennant and Andy Serkis.
Highlights for 2009 include Desperate Romantics by Peter Bowker; Dominic Savage's Freefall and Margaret written by Richard Cottan.